Washington - With over 2,000 truckers estimated by organizers due to start arriving in the nation's capitol today, anti-NDAA activists have announced a call campaign to Congress to demand it enact one of the truckers' principle demands, repeal of the NDAA. The National Defense Authorization Act, or the NDAA as it has come to be known, authorizes the US military to detain US citizens without charge or trial, indefinitely, in secret, upon mere suspicion of involvement in terrorist activity.
The truckers are carrying the message "Restore the Constitution." They are gathering at a staging area in Virginia today and will be descending on Washington, DC tomorrow.
The NDAA law has drawn fire since it passed from quarters on both the left and the right. Dr. Cornel West, an early Obama supporter, has said the NDAA could have resulted in the permanent imprisonment, without charge or trial, of Dr. Martin Luther King, as a result of King's association with Nelson Mandela, who was on the official US terrorist list at the time. On the right, the law has been savaged by conservative commentators such as Glenn Beck.
In a press release entitled "The American Drivers' Terms" the Ride for the Constitution says:
1) The National Defense Authorization Act is unconstitutional. It allows for the military to "disappear" any American Citizen without charge or reason. It allows the military to take control of all private industry. And it ends the "Posse Comitatus", which protects American Citizens from being fired upon by our own military.
Sue Serpa, a spokesperson for Massachusetts People Against the NDAA (PANDA) said that:
"We don't necessarily agree with everything the truckers say, but on this one thing we agree. The Sixth Amendment must be restored. The NDAA is the most unconstitutional, un-American legislation ever passed in the history of the United States, and is repugnant to the Constitution. Supreme Court precedent says that any law repugnant to the Constitution is void.
Massachusetts PANDA and it's umbrella organization, People Against the NDAA, recently scored two back-to-back victories in getting "NDAA nullification" passed at the local and state levels, in Albany, NY, and Oxford, MA. The city council vote in Albany was unanimous, while the Oxford resolution passed by voice vote.
The truckers Ride for the Constitution will be circling the Washington, DC beltway on October 11, 12, and 13th, with the demand that congressmen "obey their oath to the Constitution or resign."
In addition to bringing their trucker-specific issues to Washington, the truckers say that America is late in the stages of sliding into a police state, as evidenced by over-reach by the Department of Homeland Security, which has recently purchased over a billion rounds of high-powered ammunition and thousands of armored vehicles. Trucker also cite over-reach by the TSA, whose searches, the truckers say, have become invasive and humiliating far beyond what is necessary for public safety.
Organizers of the ride are asking Americans to support the convoy by buying nothing between October 11 - 13. They ask supporters to write #t2sda on their windshields and on signs ('Truckers to Shut Down America.')
Activists striving to repeal the NDAA are asking Americans to support the point in the truckers' agenda calling for repeal by calling their congressmen and demanding they sponsor a resolution which affirms that American citizens are not subject to the "laws of war" in their own country. In the past two days, Albany, NY, and the town of Oxford, MA, joined numerous towns and states with some form of legislation seeking to "nullify" the NDAA.
The most recently passed, the Oxford resolution, recognizes:
the duty of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to interpose itself between unconstitutional usurpations by the federal government or its agents and the people of this state, as well as the duty to defend the unalienable natural rights of the people, all of which is consistent with our oaths to defend the Constitution of the United States...
Ms. Serpa said:
We're going to work with the truckers on this particular item. We are all in the same boat. This is common in the broad coalitions, we don't have to agree on everything. Congress passed the NDAA three times now despite overwhelming opposition from the public each time. We want to say, 'can you hear us now, Congress?'